A reader: I just received an email offering me a job. I have a part-time job and go to school full time. I am thinking about giving up my part-time job for this offer. They say I can make $2,000 a month part time at home. Do you think this is a good offer?
Action Line: Scammers are counting on the fact that you need a job, you need money. They try to trick you. The advertise in the same places where real job placement companies and employers do.
Ads, emails and letters that promise you a high rate of return for very little time and effort should always be investigated carefully. You will find that many of these “job offers” are scams. If you are told you can make “thousands of dollars” a month, RUN the other way. If they tell you that no experience is necessary, that’s another big RED flag. If you have up-front fees for training, materials or coaching, don’t pay out.
Through the years, BBB has seen envelope stuffing, craft making and assembling, rebate processing and mystery shopping, among others. What you want to remember, promises of big income should make you suspicious. Check them out first. Get some references and call them. Check them out at bbb.org.
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Again, here are some red flags that should make you suspicious:
▪ If you have to pay anything to get the “job”
▪ If you are asked to provide credit card or bank information
▪ If you are promised lots of money for little time and effort
▪ If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is
If you want to change jobs, try usajobs.gov for federal job listings. You can also try careeronestop.org. This site is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Labor and lists hundreds of thousands of jobs in each state.
There are also many local job placement organizations and independent companies that are ethical. Don’t forget to check them out first. You also mentioned that you are a full-time student. Don’t forget to check with your career services office.
One other resource that is out there is the state of California, which offers job seeker assistance at fblinks.com/eddjob
If you think you have been a victim of a job scam, you can report it at www.bbb.org/scamtracker. Here you can report a scam or find helpful information about whether the offer you received is a scam. You can also file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission at ftc.gov and the California Attorney General’s Office, fblinks.com/caag
Action Line is written by Blair Looney, president and CEO for the Better Business Bureau serving Central California. Send your consumer concerns, questions and problems to Action Line at the Better Business Bureau, 4201 W. Shaw Ave., Suite 107, Fresno, CA 93722 or firstname.lastname@example.org.